Disability Programs

If you need to take a leave of absence, REI’s disability programs provide pay replacement (when approved) due to a non-work-related illness or injury.

Disability Programs include the following:


How do disability programs work?

After you file for a leave of absence, Lincoln Financial will assign a case manager who will be your main point of contact. Once your leave is initiated, Lincoln will provide paperwork for you and your physician too complete. When the completed forms are received and Lincoln has received all the relevant information, they will typically make its initial decision (approval or denial) regarding you claim within 10 business days.

  • A case manager will call you within 2 business days to discuss your leave of absence, how it impacts the ability to do your job and if applicable your treatment plan. Your case manager will be responsible for your disability claim (pay replacement) and will be your main contact.
  • Your case manager will contact your physician to obtain medical information and request copies of your medical records. To expedite this process, you will want to provide your physician or medical care provider with a copy of Authorization to Release Information at your next visit. This form five your doctor permission to release your medical information to Lincoln Financial Group.

Once you claim is approved your case manager will call you about the approval to discuss how frequently your case will need to be re-evaluated and when to expect follow-up calls. If you need to be out of work longer, additional medical information may be required to support an extension of your disability claim.

Lincoln Financial will coordinate your disability pay with HR Shared Services and Payroll.

If your claim is denied, your case manager will call you to explain the reason for the denial and tell you how to appeal the decision. You will also receive a letter explaining the denial and how to appeal. If your disability claim is denied, your leave will be unpaid. Accrued sick or vacation time will need to be applied during your leave of absence.

What does an approved disability claim provide?

Salary Continuation

If you are an hourly retail or OPO management, salaried or headquarters employee, you are covered by the Salary Continuation Plan. When you have an approved disability claim with Lincoln Financial, salary continuation provides:

  • Weeks 1 – 12: 100% of your average weekly earnings for your own illness or injury or for the care of a family member.
  • Weeks 13 – 26: 80% of your average weekly earnings for up to an additional 14 weeks for your own illness or injury.

Short-Term Disability (STD)

All hourly benefits-eligible employees (except HQ and retail management) are covered under STD after a five-day waiting period.

  • Weeks 1 – 6: 100% of your average weekly earnings for your own illness or injury.
  • Weeks 7 – 26: 60% of your average weekly earnings for up to an additional 14 weeks for your own illness or injury.

Your approved disability pay is based on your Average Weekly Hours at the time your leave of absence begins. You can view your Average Weekly Hours in employee self-service under Myself > Personal > Status/Key Dates.

Long-Term Disability (LTD)

If you are a benefits-eligible employee and are unable to work beyond the 26 weeks allowed under STD or Salary Continuation, REI’s Long Term Disability plan can help protect your income.

  • Core LTD Benefit: Company-paid and provided to all benefits-eligible employees. The Core LTD plan pays a monthly benefit of 40% of your pay, if approved for LTD (up to $6,667 per month), starting after 26 weeks of disability.
  • Voluntary LTD Benefit: Employee-paid additional benefit of 20% of lost monthly income when approved for LTD, to a maximum benefit of $3,333 per month.

You can elect Voluntary LTD as a new hire, during a life event or during Benefits Open Enrollment but may be subject to Evidence of Insurability (EOI). REI’s enrollment system will help you determine if EOI is required while you are electing coverage or making changes.

Evidence of Insurability (EOI) FAQs

Certain types of insurance require you or your family members to show proof of good health if you don’t enroll when you are initially eligible or you want to increase your coverage. If you don’t enroll during Benefits Open Enrollment or when you have a qualified life event, you may have to provide EOI:

  • To enroll in Supplemental Life Insurance or Supplemental LTD for the first time;
  • To increase your Supplemental Life Insurance coverage by more than one level; or
  • To enroll in or increase your supplemental spouse/life partner amount by more than one level.

REI’s enrollment system will help you determine if EOI is required while you are electing coverage or making changes.

If EOI is required for Employee Supplemental or Spouse Life Insurance, The Hartford will send you or your spouse/life partner an EOI form in the mail. Complete and mail the form or submit it through The Hartford’s online system within 31 days. If the form is late, your coverage may be delayed.

If EOI is required for Voluntary Long Term Disability, Lincoln Financial Group will email you a link to complete the health questionnaire online. If you have questions, contact Lincoln Financial Group at 1-888-287-8494, option 2.

For Life Insurance: Call The Hartford at 1-800-331-7234 to check the status of your application. Once The Hartford has approved your EOI, they will notify the Employee Service Center and the appropriate payroll contributions will be made.

For Voluntary Long Term Disability: Call Lincoln Financial Group at 1-888-287-8494, option 2.